It is really two or three days before England’s declaration of war that either the “London Free Press” or the “London Advertiser” gave front page coverage to the unfolding of events in Europe. So what interested Londoners in July 1914.
The biggest stories were about the tragic events surrounding the sinking of the liner (May 1914) "The Empress of Ireland" in the St. Laurence river. It had everything - tragedy, loss of life, and scandal. Londoners had been on the liner, and it was a rare day that names of those who survived, and those who did not (funerals get front page coverage) , appeared in the papers. A titillating scandal was reported when it was found that a Mrs. Charles Cheu had fled from her marriage, and boarded the liner as Amelia Mott. She was not one of those who survived.
There was a provincial election in the offing. “The Advertiser” was convinced that with this election the Liberals would reign supreme, and Temperance would finally be enacted in Ontario. Take that you barroom loafers! “The Free Press” was cool to that idea.
What was not cool was the weather. In June temperatures reached 94.5 degrees F. Stories advising people on how to keep themselves cool ran in both papers for several weeks. That included advice (for women of course) on the proper maintanence of the refigerator (read ice box).
|Keeping cool in Victoria Park, "The London Adversiser", June 9, 1914.|
“Keep back, Mickey, or they’ll getcha,” shouted a small child. “Naw, day won’t nudder, if je ain’t got no tobacy widja,” was the scornful reply (an attempt at humour by the Advertiser).
|Another attempt at humour by the Adversiser cartoonist. "The London Adversiser", June 15, 1914.|
|"The London Adversiser", June 12, 1914.|
|"The London Adversiser", June 14, 1814.|